The Buddy Holly Story

1978 PG 1h 53m DVD

The Buddy Holly Story

1978 PG 1h 53m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
Oscar nominee Gary Busey does his own singing in this chronicle of the rise and untimely death of rock 'n' roll pioneer Buddy Holly. The biopic covers Holly's beginnings, his first hit singles, his marriage and his rocky relationship with his band.
Gary Busey, Don Stroud, Charles Martin Smith, Conrad Janis, William Jordon, Maria Richwine, Amy Johnston, Dick O'Neill, Fred Travalena, Neva Patterson, Arch Johnson
Steve Rash
Pan-and-Scan 1.33:1
English, French, Spanish (Neutral)
French: Dolby Digital Mono, English: Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround
PG - Some material may not be suitable for children. Parents urged to give parental guidance. May contain some material parents might not like for their young children.
age 12+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 12+
age 12+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that The Buddy Holly Story is a good-hearted look at a rock 'n' roll pioneer that contains lots of great music and none of the melodramatic excesses of many musical biopics (no drugs, no overt sexuality, no self-destructive behavior). Only the credits at the end of the film reveal that Buddy Holly died in a plane crash on the night after the final performance in the film. There's occasional swearing, with repeated use of some expletives: "hell," "sh--t," "bastard," "damn," "ass," and more. When a bigot utters a racial slur, Buddy Holly counters with slurs of his own to embarrass the offender. Alcohol is consumed in several scenes; one character drinks too much and gets drunk. Some cigar and cigarette smoking consistent with the time period.

Sexual Content

Some kissing. Teenagers in 1960s are necking in a parked car; the boy tries to touch the girl's breast. Buddy and his wife are shown in bed together.


A brief scuffle; someone breaks down a door.


Occasional swearing and coarse language: "hell," "s--t," "Goddamn," "sonofabitch," "bastard," "for Christ's sake," "ass," "play with myself." Also some racial slurs used by the hero to shame a bigot: "dark meat," "nigra," and the "N" word.

Social Behavior

A strong message about how working hard and pursuing goals enthusiastically results in good fortune and success. Shows how rock 'n' roll promoted racial integration for music fans before the civil rights movement began to significantly change the culture.


Coca Cola, Jell-O, Dr. Pepper, RCA, CBS, Vertigro.

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Some drinking in social settings, including toasting with champagne to celebrate. The Crickets' drummer is seen drinking alcohol in numerous scenes and getting drunk before an important appearance. Occasional smoking of both cigarettes and cigars.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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